According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Denver Broncos have agreed to terms with former 49ers defensive lineman, D.J. Jones on a three-year deal worth up to $30 million dollars. Per Rapoport, $20 million of that deal will be guaranteed.
Source: The #Broncos agreed to terms with DT DJ Jones on a 3-year, $30M deal with $20M fully guaranteed. Big addition.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 15, 2022
D.J Jones is a 6’0”, 305lb defensive lineman who was selected by the San Fransisco 49ers in the sixth round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Since then, he has become one of the better run stuffers in the league.
During his five seasons with the 49ers, Jones has totaled 46 career starts, including all 17 games this past season and all 3 postseason games as well. During his career with the 49ers, Jones has totaled 126 total tackles, 7 sacks, 23 tackles for a loss, 3 forced fumbles, 9 quarterback hits, This past season for the 49ers, Jones totaled 56 tackles, 10 tackles for a loss, 2 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, and 3 quarterback hits.
DJ Jones is definitely at the top of my list if we look to FA to plug holes and try to fix the run defense. Big, powerful 3t with great balance against doubles, good hands, good eyes and shows enough traits that can translate to a gap and a half defense. pic.twitter.com/ySDbZ5DMTd— Robby (@DavisBreakdowns) March 9, 2022
Jones isn’t going to rush the passer a whole lot, but he is known for being a damn good run defender. Pro Football Focus had Jones having the best run-stop percentage in the league last season. Also, with the Broncos expected to use for nickel and dime packages this year, having an elite run defender in the middle of their defense is key.
It’s unclear if Jones is a direct replacement for Shelby Harris who went to Seattle in the trade for Russell Wilson, or a potential replacement for Mike Purcell. Jones’s size and skill-set have him best suited for a nose tackle role in Ejiro Evero’s defense and that’s where I believe we will see him moving forward. I would expect Mike Purcell, who was brought in under Vic Fangio will likely not be on the roster for much longer with Jones under contract.
I like this signing by the Broncos. He’s still 27 years old, is a damn good run defender, and improving the trenches is never a bad thing. Clearly, a nose tackle is important in this defense and George Paton and the Broncos got themselves a good one.
Now, get an edge rusher.